Sunday, January 27, 2019

Millennium Park

When I was working in Chicago back in the late 90's, Millennium Park was just a vast open space on one side of Michigan Avenue.  Plans were in process but, they had just barely started work on the park.  Today it is a magical place for residents and tourists alike to experience and enjoy.  One of the most popular features is "Cloud Gate" by Anish Kapoor located on the AT&T Plaza.  Chicagoans have dubbed it "the bean" for obvious reasons.

Jay Pritzker Pavilion is another popular feature.  This Frank Gehry designed bandshell contains 4,000 fixed seats and room for 7,000 more on the lawn.  It is named for Jay Pritzker whose family owns Hyatt Hotels.

Frank Gehry also designed the BP Pedestrian Bridge that runs through the park and crosses over Columbus Drive.  It is the first bridge that Gehry has designed.  It was funded by BP, plc. (British Petroleum).

The Lurie Garden is another feature of the park.  It is a 2.5 acre garden filled with perennials, bulbs, grasses, shrubs and trees.

All those wonderful plants successfully muffle the noise of a busy city and make you feel like you are actually in the country until you look up see all those tall buildings surrounding you.  The garden is named for Ann Lurie a Chicago philanthropist.

The Crown Fountain is a favorite with children and families.  As you can see from the photos, it's a great place so splash around in the water.

The fountain is an interactive, video sculpture.  Faces appear on the glass block towers and they smile and wink and then suddenly "spit out" a fountain of water from each of the tall towers.

The fountain is named for the Lester Crown family who were instrumental in the design selection and building of the fountain.    They supplied the 17 million dollars needed to build it.

Wrigley Square sits on the Northwest corner of the park near Michigan Avenue.  It features the millennium monument, a limestone peristyle monument rising 40 feet high.  The base contains the names of 91 contributors to the park who all contributed at least 1 million dollars for the park's development.  The William Wrigley Jr, Foundation contributed 5 million as did the most of the other benefactors I mentioned above.

Millennium Park is now a "must see" destination in the city of Chicago.  I find a way to visit it again on every trip I make to the city.


PerthDailyPhoto said...

Oh my gosh! Millennium Park is astounding Sharon. My head would be spinning as to where the look first. I've seen the 'bean' brfore, incroyable for reflections. The Frank Gehry Pavilion would be the winner for me, his imagination is unbelievable! I can just imagine the number of visitors here ✨

biebkriebels said...

I have seen the Bean and liked that Millenium park very much with that fountain. I remember our hotel was close to it, we could walk to the place.

Lois said...

Beautiful photos and definitely a "must see"! The last time I was there was with my grandson and there was a lot of snow, even on top of "The Bean".

Judy Ryer said...

I haven't been to Chicago since I was in high school. I didn't see anything like that in those days but as you know, it's been awhile. Great shots of all the things to see there.

William Kendall said...

That area really is an incredible spot. So well done!

Terrific shots, Sharon!

Thérèse said...

A city I still have to discover. SUch nice pictures.

Catalyst said...